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Englewood Community Meets Jordan Valley Farming Leader

Parlor meeting in Englewood.

On Thursday May 23, Na’ama Atidya wowed an exclusive gathering of two dozen leaders of the Englewood Jewish community and One Israel Fund at the home of its esteemed president Jacqui (and Steven) Herman.

Atidya is the co-founder of the Einot Kedem Farm in the Jordan Valley with her husband Omer. Together, they established the farm in 2004 along a wide and strategically important swath of land along Israel’s longest border with Jordan. Atidya’s greatest pride is to have provided a home for countless at-risk youth who have called and continue to call Einot Kedem their home. On the farm, these youth learn life skills and develop strong self-esteem as they perform an array of tasks and responsibilities, such as providing for the needs of the different livestock, cultivating the land, harvesting the crops and performing vital security patrols.

Atidya, who grew up in Tel Aviv, shared her compelling story of how a city girl got married and chose to build and raise her family on a farm in one of Israel’s least populated areas. She described the difficulty in growing a farm as well as the challenging security situation and the various methods they employ to keep their family, the teenagers they look after and the farm itself, safe. This included everyone volunteering for two-hour guard duty shifts each night, ensuring there are always two or three people awake and keeping watch at all times.

“Na’ama is captivating and her story is breathtaking,” said Jacqui Herman. “As the president of One Israel Fund, I am blessed to be able to meet so many outstanding people building and settling in the heartland of Israel and Na’ama embodies this pioneer spirit. Her infectious smile and positive outlook, in the face of incredible adversity, is truly inspiring.”

Sharon Feiler, who traveled with her husband Yoel from their home in Highland Park to attend the meeting, stated: “Listening to Na’ama is quite uplifting. We so admire her and her family’s efforts in working the land and helping youth develop skills and self-esteem. This is a wonderfully concrete way to support the people of Israel.”

This is Atidya’s first trip abroad as the financial needs of the farm are such that she and Omer realized they must branch out and develop new friends so that their farm can continue to flourish and live out the Zionist pioneering spirit. The needs of the farm are great, especially in the areas of security. To learn more about how to help Atidya, contact One Israel Fund at [email protected] or visit
www.oneisraelfund.org.


Harry Glazer is the Middlesex County editor of The Jewish Link. He can be reached at [email protected] and he welcomes feedback. When he’s really lucky, he gets to cover events in Englewood.

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